STOP Doctors Violating Patient’s Gun Privacy Rights in Florida

House Bill 155, introduced by state Representative Jason Brodeur (R-33) PASSED yesterday in the House Criminal Justice subcommittee.

HOWEVER, a vote that should have been 11 to 4 in favor of gun owner’s privacy rights was only a 9 to 6 margin because two House Republicans — who sat side-by-side — voted against us and never had the common decency to contact us and say they were going to abandon gun owners.

VOTING AGAINST gun owners was state Representative Carlos Trujillo (R-116) from Miami. Representative Trujillo is a newly-elected freshman and although this was opening day of his first legislative session, he should have known better. He should have remembered that your word is your bond. He needs to know that he made a big mistake and we are watching. You can e-mail him at: [email protected]

ALSO VOTING AGAINST gun owners was state Representative John Tobia (R-31) from Satellite Beach. Representative Tobia KNOWS better. He’s not newly elected and there is no excuse for Representative Tobia’s actions. He’s a veteran legislator who has solicited NRA’s endorsement and support in his campaigns every time he has run for the state House. He has indicated on his questionnaires every time that he is 100% on Second Amendment issues. Not only did he say he supported our position on this specific legislative issue, he signed his name to it. Yesterday, he showed us that he has not been truthful with us and he needs to know we will remember his actions. You can e-mail him at: [email protected]

VOTING FOR THE BILL were eight Republicans and one Democrat — state Representative John Julien (D-104) was the lone Democrat.

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VOTING AGAINST THE BILL WERE:

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AND TWO THE REPUBLICANS,
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BACKGROUND
Doctors need to treat illness, not guns. Pediatricians and other physicians, in growing numbers, are prying into our personal lives, invading our privacy and straying from issues relating to disease and medicine by questioning children or their parents about gun ownership.

We take our children to physicians for medical care, not moral judgment, political harassment and privacy intrusions – and that is what HB 155 intends to prohibit.

This bill comes in answer to families who are complaining about the growing political agenda being carried out in examination rooms by doctors and medical staffs – and the arrogant berating if a patient refuses to answer questions that violate privacy rights and offend common decency.

Horrified parents have described nurses entering the answers to gun questions into laptop computers to become a part of medical records. Parents have become concerned about whether those records can be used by the government or by insurance companies to deny health care coverage because a family exercises a civil right in owning firearms.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the American Medical Association are pushing this gun ban agenda. The website of the AAP makes it clear its goal is to ban guns and to prevent parents from having guns in their homes or vehicles.

The intent of some may be to stop death from firearms accidents, but it is worth noting that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics, doctors and medical staffs in Florida are responsible for six times more accidental deaths (called “Medical Misadventures”) than firearms accidents. Physicians have plenty of room to work in their own backyards to stop accidental deaths in keeping with their “first do no harm” medical oaths.

Keeping children and families safe is a worthy goal, but physicians should focus on what happens to children and patients in their offices and hospitals. Doctors should practice medicine rather than behave like social workers, gun monitors or gun registration bureaus.

As parents, we are responsible for our children’s safety. We don’t need doctors pushing their anti-gun politics on us or our children. We need them to spend their time practicing medicine and not prying into our personal lives on issues that have nothing to do with disease, its cure, or its eradication.

Imagine how you would react if this happened to someone in your family:

A Mom took her toddler to their pediatrician, who had been the child’s pediatrician since he was born.

Out of the clear, the pediatrician asked if she or her husband owned any guns. She was shocked and responded by asking, “Do YOU own a gun?”

He told her that whether or not HE owned a gun was none of her business. She responded by saying “right back at you.” The doctor got angry and walked out of the room.

The mom waited for 30 minutes before a nurse came in and said the doctor wasn’t coming back so she could leave. She dressed her son and left without the child ever being examined.

The doctor’s office sent her a bill, because she walked out without paying. She wouldn’t pay the bill because the doctor walked out without examining her child.

The bill was turned over to a collection agency. The collection agency started harassing the family and threatening their credit.

Her husband hired a lawyer. The doctor told the lawyer it was all the Mom’s fault, because she wouldn’t answer his question and as a doctor, he had a right to ask any “damn” thing he wanted to.

The doctor’s lawyer then got involved and advised the doctor to cancel the bill and apologize to the family. The doctor canceled the bill, but never apologized. Then told the family to find a new doctor.

The many horror stories out there are unconscionable.

We know that many doctors don’t interrogate their patients about what private personal property they own. This bill is not about them. HB 155 is about stopping the anti-gun doctors who violate privacy rights, try to offer unsolicited political advice to patients and become abusive when patients refuse to be bullied.

Please read the opinion of Dr. Timothy Wheeler with Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership at the Claremont Institute, Doctor’s Office Not the Place for Anti-Gun Politics in the Sun Sentinel. You can read the article by clicking here.

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  • There is one catch to this! PSYCHATRISTS should be allowed to ask their patients about their gun possession! That is the only bunch that should be allowed; otherwise we could see more of the mentally ill pulling stunts like we see in AZ. If a psychiatrist sees a danger, they should be allowed to secure weapons. Remember, when buying a gun from a FFL, there is a question asking if you are mentally defective. This is a turn down for a weapon! Rushed laws are a poor idea but this should be workable.

  • I am a psychiatrist. I was reared around guns, and was taught gun safety at an early age. But to refuse to allow me to inquire if a suicidal patient has access to a gun is requiring me to commit malpractice. Most depressed people see their family doctor, not a psychiatrist, so their doctors also need the freedom to learn about the safety of the patient’s home.
    I believe most of the active supporters of this bill are people who are educated as to safe storage of firearms, but many people are not. I have read several studies that conclude that, if a doctor talks to a patient about stopping smoking or losing weight, the discussion increases the odds that the patient will ultimately make healthy changes in their lives. A doctor can also help reinforce safe practices regarding gun storage as well.
    If a patient fears that any information about gun ownership, or sexual practices, or religion might be turned over to a third party, remember that you have legal control over your medical chart. You can prohibit, in writing, the doctor’s office from releasing any information about guns from the chart and still safely talk with the doctor about any guns in the house and how they are stored. If the doctor makes inappropriate personal comments about your owning a gun, you can file a complaint with the county or state medical board.

  • concerned

    I am a 22 year military veteran, a four time combat vet, an owner of multiple guns (and a concealed carry permit holder0, a supporter of individual rights, and a parent. I am also a physician who treats children. I’m no gun-control advocate, but this bill is irresponsible and just plain crazy. Gun safety is an important part of preventative medicine. Llike tobacco use, wearing a bicycle helmet, and using seat-belts. We ask all those things, too. . . every visit, every kid. It’s our job. You are advocating using government interference in the doctor patient relationship to force doctors to commit malpractice. This makes gun-owners look like nut cases and it is embarrassing. This makes us look like the extremist caricatures people try to paint us as. Bad law, bad medicine, bad government.

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